Pierre Fauchard: The Father of Modern Dentistry
By Cosmetic Dental & Implant Center
October 01, 2014
Do you consider yourself a history buff? Do you get all the history questions right on Jeopardy? If so, then you may have already heard of Pierre Fauchard. You may also know that he's known as the "Father of Modern Dentistry." However, how much do you really know about one of the most eminent names in the dental world? Your Sandy Springs dental office is here to tell you more about this amazing practitioner.
Early Life of Pierre Fauchard
Pierre Fauchard was born in Brittany, France in 1678. He did not come from a wealthy family, and his schooling was not considered to be of the highest standard. However, at the tender age of 15, he began training as a surgeon in the French Navy under Major Alexandre Poteleret, who had a vested interest in diseases of the mouth. At that time, scurvy was a common condition and Fauchard observed this oral disease often while at sea. After three dedicated years in the Navy, he left to practice dentistry.
Dental Life of Pierre Fauchard
During Fauchard’s time, there was no formal training or regulations regarding dental treatments. That meant that anyone who was interested in doing so could practice dentistry! Dentistry at that time was primitive to say the least. Thank goodness it’s come such a long way since the 18th century.
After leaving the Navy, Fauchard established his dental practice in Angers, France in 1700. Fauchard had countless achievements during his dental career:
- He disproved the theory that tiny worms caused dental decay.
- He found a correlation between sugar and cavities and actually recommended limiting sugar consumption.
- He was a proponent for filling cavities and created his own filling materials.
- He used instruments from jewelers and watchmakers and altered them to make dental tools.
- He invented dental prosthetics and invented ways to fix tooth loss (luckily today we have revolutionary procedures like dental implants in Sandy Springs).
- He also created the first braces, which were made of gold. He discovered that when he applied pressure to the braces using wiring, the teeth would realign (how neat!).
However, his most important contribution happened much later in his career. In 1720, 20 years after starting his own dental practice, Fauchard moved to Paris. It was there that he found that the famous medical libraries didn’t possess good dentistry textbooks. Frustrated by this severe lack of educational material, he decided to write his own. This 800-page book entitled The Surgical Dentist became the foundation for dentistry throughout Europe at that time.
We certainly can thank Fauchard’s inventive mind for getting dentistry to where it is today. Because of him we can now offer state-of-the-art restorative tooth procedures like dental implants in Sandy Springs, so no one has to deal with tooth loss.
If you’re interested in getting dental implants or you just want to book your next checkup, call your Sandy Springs, GA dentist at (404) 255-5006.
If you are a history buff or a lover of all things Fauchard, we would love for you to share some things about him that we might have left out. Don’t be shy—history lovers unite!